The United States Embassy has finally reacted to the controversial reduction of visa application fee for Americans citizens by the Nigerian Government.
KanyiDaily recalls that the US Government had on Tuesday, 27th August 2019, announced that Nigerians applying for US visas will be required to pay a visa issuance fee, or reciprocity fee, which took effect on August 29.
The US Embassy blamed the Nigerian government for the increased visa issuance fee which was done based on the principle of reciprocity meant to eliminate the cost difference U.S. citizens pay to obtain Nigerian visas.
“Since early 2018, the U.S. government has engaged the Nigerian government to request that the Nigerian government change the fees charged to U.S. citizens for certain visa categories,” says the Public Affairs Section of the US Embassy.
“After eighteen months of review and consultations, the government of Nigeria has not changed its fee structure for U.S. citizen visa applicants, requiring the U.S. Department of State to enact new reciprocity fees in accordance with our visa laws.
“The reciprocity fee will be required for all Nigerian citizens worldwide, regardless of where they are applying for a non-immigrant visa to the United States.
Following the development, the Nigerian government through its Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, bowed to pressure and reduced the visa fee of United States (US) citizens seeking Nigerian visa from $180 to $150.
“The Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola has approved the decrease of visa charges payable by U.S. citizens in line with reciprocity policy as recommended by the committee.
“Accordingly, the Comptroller-General of Nigeria Immigration Service, Muhammad Babandede, has been directed to implement the decrease in Nigeria’s visa charges to U.S. citizens with effect from August, 29, 2019.”
Subsequently, the US Embassy has now reacted to the decision of the Nigerian government to reduce visa application fee for Americans.
In a statement made available to Nigeria News Agency (NAN) on Friday after an enquiry, the US said it would only act if the reduction made by the Nigerian Government was made official.
“The US Embassy looks forward to receiving official diplomatic communication regarding a new fee schedule for Americans seeking Nigerian visas.
“Until such time, and confirmation of implementation, the reciprocity fees for approved visas to the United States will remain in place,” the statement reads.